A coalition of wind industry leaders has launched Offshore Wind California, whose goal is to develop 10 GW of floating wind in the Golden State by 2040.
The coalition partners believe that California is well-placed as the next investment hot spot for America’s booming offshore wind industry, industry leaders at the Pacific Rim Offshore Wind conference heard. Founding members of the coalition include Aker Solutions, Equinor, Magellan Wind, Mainstream Renewable Power, Northland Power, Ørsted and Principle Power. The non-profit Pacific Ocean Energy Trust is supporting the formation of Offshore Wind California (OWC) and is also a founding member.
Citing advances in floating platform technology and falling costs, the coalition urged California to set a goal of reaching a minimum of 10 GW of offshore wind by 2040, to generate jobs, growth and meet the state’s commitment to 100% renewable power by 2045.
OWC executive director Adam Stern said, “It’s time for California, a renewable energy leader with one of the world’s best offshore wind resources, to stake its claim to the growing benefits of offshore wind, including jobs, economic development, lower emissions, and potential savings for ratepayers.”
California Energy Commission chair David Hochschild said, “Offshore wind is poised to play a major role helping California meet its renewable energy goals.
“Working together, industry leaders, policy makers, environmental advocates, labour unions, and power providers can advance the technology and make this renewable resource a mainstream, competitive clean energy source. Offshore wind holds great promise as part of the diverse power portfolio and transformative clean energy change California is looking for.”
OWC board chair and head of new markets at Ørsted Sunny Gupta said, “California is committed to 100% power from renewable energy by 2045.
“Offshore wind is critical to reach this mark and will create jobs and green growth. It is an ideal complement to existing renewable resources, with steady and powerful winds that grow even stronger after sunset. We want California to seize its opportunity to be a leading offshore wind market in the US and across the Pacific Rim.”
The National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) estimates California’s technical potential for offshore wind at a huge 112 GW, including up to 8.4 GW in three designated call areas identified by the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management.
While deeper West Coast waters require floating technology, this technology is now being tested in various markets around the world. Technology advances and economies of scale have established the commercial case for floating offshore wind. NREL estimates that building 10 GW of offshore wind in California would create 18,000 jobs and generate US$20Bn in GDP by 2050.